Probate is a court-supervised procedure for transferring ownership of someone’s assets after he or she dies. This process validates the person’s will and distributes property as the will directs. If the decedent left no will or other legal arrangement for transferring assets upon death, the estate may still go through probate. The goal of probate is to protect the rights of heirs or other beneficiaries and others who have an interest in an estate. Probate determines what the estate owes in taxes and to creditors.
A trust administration is NOT a court-supervised process, yet its goal is also the transfer of property from a trust to according to the terms of the trust for the benefit of the beneficiaries after the settlor’s death.